Choosing the right homeschool curriculum for your children is a critical decision that can significantly impact their learning experience. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, you’re not alone. Many homeschool moms face the same challenge, but the good news is that you don’t have to navigate this journey alone.

As a homeschool mom with 20 years of experience, both as a homeschooled child and as a homeschooling mom of four boys, I’ve been through it all. I’ve bought the big box curriculum thinking it was going to solve all my problems (it didn’t). I went rogue and tried the unschooling method and was bored out of my mind. I think I’ve finally found a happy place now landing somewhere in between the two, but it can take years to arrive to that point.

In the meantime, I want to share with you my top tips for how to choose a homeschool curriculum (while you figure out where you land in the spectrum of homeschooling).

Start with Understanding Your Child

When we consider our children’s ages and stages, learning styles, and interests, while understanding our time management needs and how we best like to teach, our list of curriculum options quickly begins to narrow. Here are some tailored options and considerations for each age group to help you make an informed decision:

Ages 3-7 Years Old

Key Considerations:

  • Foundational Skills: Focus on reading, writing, and basic math.
  • Engagement: Use hands-on activities, interactive materials, and play-based learning. Lean into their interests by visiting the library and exploring new topics together.
  • Flexibility: Young children benefit from a flexible schedule that allows plenty of time for exploration and play.

Curriculum Options:

  • Sonlight Core A: Literature-based with lots of read-alouds, integrating history, geography, and Bible.
  • All About Reading/All About Spelling: Multi-sensory programs catering to different learning styles.
  • Math U See (Primer and Alpha): Uses manipulatives to teach math concepts concretely. Math with Confidence is also great.
  • Five in a Row: A literature-based unit study approach covering multiple subjects through storybooks.
  • The Good and the Beautiful: Covers language arts and math, incorporating moral values through storytelling.
  • Wonderfilled Days: Nature-based curriculum integrating seasonal themes with hands-on activities.
  • Keyboarding Without Tears: Web-based curriculum designed to teach effective typing skills.

Ages 8-11 Years Old

Key Considerations:

  • Skill Building: Enhance reading comprehension, writing abilities, and math skills.
  • Interest Development: Incorporate subjects that spark interest, such as science, history, and art.
  • Structure and Independence: Begin to foster independent learning while providing structured guidance.

Curriculum Options:

  • The Good and the Beautiful: Comprehensive language arts and literature curriculum with a strong emphasis on moral values. Great math program too.
  • Singapore Math: Focuses on problem-solving and mental math strategies. Teaching Textbooks is a great online option.
  • Story of the World: Engaging history curriculum with a narrative style including activities and projects.
  • Journey Homeschool Academy: Online platform offering science-based courses with engaging video lessons and hands-on experiments.
  • Outschool.com: Online platform offering live, interactive classes on various subjects.
  • The Tuttle Twins: Books and curriculum teaching economic, political, and social principles through engaging stories.

Tween/Teen Years of Homeschooling

Ages 12-15 Years Old

Key Considerations:

  • Critical Thinking: Develop analytical skills through more complex subjects.
  • Subject Depth: Delve deeper into subjects like advanced math, science, history, and literature.
  • Independent Learning: Encourage self-directed study and time management skills.

Curriculum Options:

  • Saxon Math: Known for its thorough and incremental approach, ideal for building a strong math foundation. CTCMath is a popular online option.
  • Apologia Science: Offers in-depth science courses with a Christian perspective, including experiments and hands-on activities.
  • IEW (Institute for Excellence in Writing): Structured program teaching advanced writing skills.
  • The Tuttle Twins Academy: Coming soon! An online educational program expanding on the Tuttle Twins books, teaching economics, government, and civics.

Ages 16-18 Years Old

Key Considerations:

  • College and Career Prep: Focus on subjects aligning with future goals, whether academic or vocational.
  • Advanced Coursework: Offer advanced placement (AP) courses, dual enrollment, or specialized programs.
  • Life Skills: Include practical life skills such as financial literacy, critical thinking, and effective communication.

Curriculum Options:

  • The Well-Trained Mind: A classical education approach with rigorous academic courses and college prep.
  • Thinkwell and Khan Academy: Excellent for advanced math and science courses with a focus on self-paced learning.
  • Advanced Placement (AP) Courses: College Board-approved courses available through various online platforms.
  • Dave Ramsey’s Foundations in Personal Finance: Essential for teaching financial literacy and management skills.

Ready to Plan Your Homeschool Year Like a Boss?

By considering these options and tailoring them to your child’s unique needs, you can create a rich, engaging, and effective homeschooling experience. If you still need direction or a second pair of eyes, sign up for my “Plan Your Homeschool Year Like a Boss” event.

Join me in this event, and let’s make homeschooling a joy for you and your children. You’ll get expert guidance, a personalized plan, and the confidence to start the school year strong..

Workshop Details:

Inside this live, plan with me challenge, you’ll learn how to reverse engineer your curriculum so that you don’t fall behind, how to build your ideal homeschooling routine that creates the consistency you crave, what subjects to teach and the best way to teach them, and so much more!

Don’t miss out on this opportunity to make your homeschooling journey smooth, joyful, and a stress-free experience.

Click here to reserve your spot and take the first step toward an elevated homeschooling experience:

 

 

Warm regards,

Amanda,
Homeschool coach, mental health practitioner, executive functions expert

P.S. Have questions? Please use the contact me form here!